Brief communication: Impact of common ice mask in surface mass balance estimates over the Antarctic ice sheet

Regional climate models compute ice sheet surface mass balance (SMB) over a mask that defines the area covered by glacier ice, but ice masks have not been harmonised between models. Intercomparison studies of modelled SMB therefore use a common ice mask. The SMB in areas outside the common ice mask, which are typically coastal and high-precipitation regions, is discarded. Ice mask differences change integrated SMB by between 40.5 and 140.6 Gt yr(-1) (1.8 % to 6.0 % of ensemble mean SMB), equivalent to the entire Antarctic mass imbalance. We conclude there is a pressing need for a common ice mask protocol.


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Authors: Hansen, Nicolaj, Simonsen, Sebastian B., Boberg, Fredrik, Kittel, Christoph, Orr, Andrew ORCIDORCID record for Andrew Orr, Souverijns, Niels, van Wessem, J. Melchior, Mottram, Ruth

On this site: Andrew Orr
25 February, 2022
The Cryosphere / 16
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